Hair Skin Care Skin Diseases

Since the skin is the largest organ in the body, problems are quite common (especially with the way most of us mistreat our skin). Skin diseases are often not as serious as other health complications, but they provide visual cues to others that something is not right with our body. This can lead to uncomfortable get-togethers and embarrassing situations, so it’s best to treat these skin diseases as soon as possible.

Acne

Funny how this inflammatory disease of the skin usually appears during adolescence, when people are at their most socially insecure. Not only do teenagers have to deal with raging hormones, but they also have to manage the various whiteheads and blackheads that literally sprout up overnight.

In medical terms, acne is an “inflammatory skin condition characterized by superficial skin eruptions caused by plugging of the pores.” Acne can occur on any part of the body, although the face, chest, back, and upper arms are the most common locations. Acne affects a large percentage of the population at some stage in life, but adolescents are the largest group of people affected.

Although curing acne is extremely difficult, you can take certain measures to help reduce your acne:

  • Use a mild soap and warm water (not hot-it can further irritate the skin) to gently cleanse the affected areas and to remove all dirt and make-up. Do this at least once a day and always after exercising. Using a clean washcloth each time will prevent a bacterial infection.
  • Use caution when choosing a topical astringent. Astringents can help remove excess oil, but some can be irritating and dry your skin, further irritating it.
  • Do not squeeze, scratch, or pick at the lesions (no matter how tempting it is!). Scarring, as well as a secondary infection, can result.
  • Keep hair clean (shampoo daily if possible) and pulled back from your face. This is important while sleeping, too.
  • Use only gentle, non-comedogenic beauty products. Many products can aggravate acne and irritate your skin further.
  • Avoid over-exposure to the sun.
  • Get adequate rest.
  • Exercise regularly.

Eczema

Eczema, or atopic dermatitis, is a skin irritation characterized by red, flaky skin. It can occur in infants, children and adults. In many cases there is a family history of asthma, hay fever, or other allergy-related conditions.

Eczema lesions appear in several different forms: weeping sores, dry scaly patches, or chronic thickened areas. Because this is a chronic condition, the best home remedies for eczema are to eliminate those things that aggravate the symptoms:

  • foods that cause allergic reactions
  • clothing or other materials (bed clothes, towels, etc.) that irritate the skin
  • scented soaps that tend to dry the skin
  • temperature changes that can cause perspiration
  • stress.

People suffering from eczema often have the urge to scratch the affected skin. While it may provide temporary relief, scratching will only damage the skin and exacerbate the problem.

Psoriasis

Psoriasis is an autoimmune skin disease, characterized by silvery flaky patches of skin that are red and inflamed underneath. Commonly infected locations include the scalp, knees, elbows, and groin.

The disease is caused mainly by heredity and stress. The person often experiences periods of severe outbreaks and improvements. The outbreaks may be so severe that it interferes with the person’s daily life.

Treatment for psoriasis occurs in steps based on the severity of the disease. There are three basic steps and consist of a topical application, UV therapy, and an oral medication or an injection to treat the immune system.

While most of the treatment depends on your doctor, you may be able to alleviate some of the discomfort of the disease:

  • Some people find that adding oil when bathing and then moisturizing after can soothe the skin.
  • Others believe that soaking in water with Epsom salt helps.
  • Regularly applying a moisturizer to the skin may help.

UV light soothes the skin by killing off the cells in the immune system that are causing the disease. This may be the perfect excuse to get some sun.